What Price Beauty: Sarah Palin's Look for Less


Sarah Palin's look is so popular, but she does not do it alone, or for very cheap.

According to Page Six, a secret sect of stylists is micromanaging her non-pantsuit look, and encouraging her to splurge: She wore a $2,500 Valentino Jacket to the convention. (She also recently upgraded her lipstick from Mary Kay to MAC.)

Pricey! But when copied, apparently, the attention you get can be off the charts.

Last Saturday night, Tina Fey's take on the Palin look helped the season premiere of Saturday Night Live (STOCK QUOTE: GE) snag its highest ratings for a season opener since 2001 (and its highest single show rating since the real Al Gore hosted in 2002).

But while Fey had SNL's wardrobe department to help her, the rest of us have to work a bit harder. But that doesn't mean women aren't trying. From wig stores to shoe retailers, the fashion industry is top to bottom buzzing with Palin fever.

Whether you have the dough to do the authentic look or you want to find a budget conscious angle, here's the lowdown on this Governor's style.

Palin sports grey rimless frames (model 704, No. 34) made by Kazuo Kawasaki, and distributed in the United States by Italee Optics. After the Republican National Convention, orders quadrupled and were backlogged, forcing manufacturers to shift to a 24-hour production style to keep up with demand for the lightweight titanium frames.

The Palin Price: $375 (without lenses)
Budget Alternative: Dubbed “Governess Chic” these glasses from Blue Dame will only set you back $14.80. But act fast, several colors are already on backorder.

While Palin's past photos show styles ranging from beauty queen perm to hockey mom long and straight, the governor and VP nominee now sports the power updo. An updo requires little more than a fist of bobby pins. Palin frequents the Beehive Beauty Shop in Wasilla, Alaska to get her locks cut and colored for $115.

The Palin Price: $115
Budget Alternative: Give your Palin do’ a test drive with a $46 Sarah Palin wig on wigsalon.com.

The youthful Naughty Monkey patent leather heels worn by Palin at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn. are generally preferred more by Paris Hilton than presidential candidates. But that didn't stop the 44-year-old Governor from strutting across the stage in a pair of red 3 ½" heel Double Dare pumps.

The Palin Price: Naughty Monkey Double Dare Pumps are $89 on Amazon.com
Budget Alternative: The Halden Hidden Platform Pump ($22.95) from Payless (STOCK QUOTE: PSS) gives you all the height for less than half the price.

Palin’s nails are perfectly manicured with French tips. At the Rejuvenation Salon & Spa in Juneau, AK., a classic manicure is $35 and pedicure is $50, with a $5 add-on for French tip polish for each.

The Palin Price:
Budget Alternative: Do a French manicure at home with a neutral sheer polish, a white polish and guide strips. Or get everything you need in an all-in-one set, like Sally Hansen’s 5 Minute French Manicure Pen ($9.99) or Bath and Body Works’ (STOCK QUOTE: LTD) French manicure kit ($12).

What politician would be complete without their American flag pin? Certainly not Palin, who takes the simple red, white and blue up a notch. On mccainbling.com, you can get the same rhinestone American flag pin that Palin wore at the Republican National Convention and let your patriotism sparkle.

The Palin Price: $25
Budget Alternative: $3.95 for an American flag pin on pinmart.com http://www.pinmart.com/ (rhinestones not included)

Palin's jewelry has already got people talking, and it’s not all positive. The good: her gold nugget earrings in the shape of Alaska reflect her home state connection. The bad: sporting large hoop earrings to Mississippi after Hurricane Gustav were criticized for being an insensitive style choice in the gritty disaster area.

The Palin Price: Alaskan made rough nugget earrings, $125. 14k round hoop earrings, $65 on Amazon.com.
Budget Alternative: Nina Ricci gold tone earrings, $14.00. http://www.tias.com/cgi-bin/google.fcgi/itemKey=1922412701 Gold chunky hoop earrings, $6.50 http://claires.com/product.asp?name=prod&color=gold&rcid=31&id=3509&scid=32

Tanning Bed
To keep her skin looking tan and healthy during those long Alaskan winters, Palin installed a tanning bed in the Governor's mansion in Alaska. First reported by Narco News, Palin's gubernatorial spokesman Bill McCallister later confirmed the reports saying that Palin paid for the bed herself and that it was surplus from a local athletic club.

The Palin Price: $3,000
Budget Alternative: $39.99 a month for unlimited tanning at Soleil Tanning Salons

Total Cost of Authentic Palin: $3889.00
Total Cost of Budget Palin: $158.18

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